Good news to local bookworms, the annual Burkittsville Gigantic Used Book Sale is in full swing. Those looking for good deals on books will find them here — alongside an intriguing and unique look into Maryland’s historical past.
The book sale is hosted every Saturday in October, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the town’s historical Reformed church turned museum, the South Mountain Heritage Society offers a wide variety of donated books, from cookbooks to horror novels, at inexpensive prices, as well as CDs and VHS tapes. On the last Saturday of the month, books will be sold by the bag for a similarly low price.
The building in which the sale is held also serves as a museum, full of artifacts from the town’s rich history. Jody Brumage, historian, and curator of the South Mountain Heritage Society, has hosted the sale since 2006.
“The sale serves as a fundraiser, which supports South Mountain’s programs as well as the preservation of our quarters-” he said. “The building was a church for 150 years, built in 1829. It was known as the ‘Union Church’ since it was shared between two congregations, the Lutherans and the Reformed church.”
Those interested in learning a little more about this historical site after browsing books, Brumage also offers 15-minute guided tours around the grounds. There you can take a walk through the graveyard, learn about Burkittsville’s involvement in the Civil War, and look at some of the church’s architecture.
“In 1860 the Reformed church was renovated, resulting in much of its current appearance.” Brumage said. “After years of declining membership, the church unfortunately closed in 1979. South Mountain Heritage Society has owned the building since 1993 and have been its caretaker ever since.”